Tuesday, August 4, 2015


This isn't a paid review or a compensated free product, I just feel like I should blog about something that has worked for me that might work for others.

Original Cooling Towel
Not sure if I had ever heard of this before our friend "D" told us about it.  She bought one for her son to use when he was mowing and she said he raved about it so much that she bought one for herself.  We were at Bed Bath and Beyond recently and they had them on end of Summer clearance.  After chuckling for a moment at an 'end of Summer' sale as my hands left a layer of skin on the steering wheel, I decided to buy one and try it out.  

Frogg Toggs Cooling Towell
It works SO well.  When you first open it, it's soft and flexible.  You get it wet, wring it out just a bit and while it still holds an abnormally large amount of water, it doesn't drip.  That's the method it uses to cool you, as it evaporates it creates the cooling effect.  It's kind of rubbery, definitely an odd feeling 'fabric'.  I've worn it while mowing and while working in the garden and it doesn't get your clothing very wet either.  I say "very" because if you put a lot of water in it, there will be some dripping.  The nice thing is if you have a bit of a breeze, it's really cooling.  Even after a couple of hours on the mower, it was still cooling me down.  One warning...you better wash it and fold it into the shape/size you want because when it dries, it's as stiff as a board.  You know how a chamois gets hard when it's dry?  It's just like that.  

We only got one, this color is called "Hi Visibility Green" but I've got another one on order so we'll each have one, or at least have a backup.  Of course, they also sell them on Amazon (is everything available at Amazon? ha)  Frogg Toggs Chilly Pad Cooling Towel is the link.  They are available in several colors and other sizes, though we like this large size, this one is 33"x13".

4 1/2 STARS OUT OF 5

Monday, August 3, 2015


We realized that we never posted photos of the bonfire we did a few weeks back.  We had to wait for the big pile of stuff to dry out.  This is from when we had the backyard cleared.  All the weeks of rain kept it all wet.  It took several weeks of hot and dry to be ready.  

Then one Saturday, "R" from 2nd Family came up and asked us "are you ready to burn that pile?" 

Um yeah, sure! 

Big burn pile
OK, so as you can see, it was a big pile to burn.  Side note, it's not as close to the barns as it looks in this photo, no worries.  

Burn pile
It took a few hours, but it burned down and then smoldered for awhile.  We kept the water hose nearby to put out any hot spots.

Burn pile after
Here it was the next day.  That large tree trunk barely even burned, but most other pieces did, so that's good.  We have since put the all of that into a smaller pile next to the big trunk, and will try again...after the grass is not as dry as it is now.  It's waaay too dry to try that now.  We need a good rain and then a week to dry before we try again.

We had the option when they cleared the brush and trees to have them run this through the chipper or make a burn pile.  The advantage of the burn pile was that they had more time to clear (we paid for them for the day) and so it seemed at the time like the better deal.  Looking back, it wasn't.  We hate this mess.  We'd much rather have the yard clean and clear and neat and a few more pieces of brush on the property.  Not sure we'll even be able to get this trunk burned completely.  The wood is so hard, there is just nothing else to do with it.  They even broke a blade on their fancy machine while cutting it size to put it into the pile.  We might just have to pay someone to have this hauled off.  

Anyway, it's mostly done so there is THAT at least...

Sunday, August 2, 2015


I always talk about mowing on the zen machine (my nickname for our John Deere X320 tractor).  It's my zen time, even in this heat.  I wasn't going to mow but there is a strong chance I might not have to mow the rest of this month if this weather cycle continues, so I thought I'd post some pics I took as I was mowing so you can get a tour of things...

The grass is starting to brown in this heat...

Some trails are a bit narrow...

And some are much wider...

Some are really long and winding...

And other spots are big and open...

There are trees to mow around...

And other spots with only a few trees...

Now mind you, these are just some of the open areas and trails that I've cleared  and kept cleared over the last couple of years.  This isn't around the house, or the barns, behind the house, around the garden, or even the long driveway, but I've posted pics of those before, thought we'd show some other areas.  

We never thought we'd say this after our wet Spring, but if it rained, we'd be OK with that.  Of course, rain or a cool front...rain or a cool front...decisions decisions.  Hope you had a great weekend!


Bones are still Needed, vintage poster image courtesy of UK Imperial Archives
Here is an interesting one.  I've found some bone posters before and this one is one I hadn't seen.  It comes from the UK and from WWII.  The woman running with the large bone in her arms (Jurassic World? LOL) is presumably taking bones to donate to make glue for housing, fertiliser, or fertiliZer as we spell it over here in the states, ha, for growing food and for other things like soap.

Can you imagine asking people to save and donate bones today?  I bet many wouldn't even know that things like glue and soap were once made that way.  I guess they are rarely used that way these days?  Still kind of fascinating!

Was at the farm yesterday for a few hours, came back into town, and now going out today to accomplish a few more tasks.  

It's H-O-T...

Saturday, August 1, 2015


Well, off to the farm today for some work, not sure I'll do much outside...but there is always something to do inside.  High today will be 102...

Though I would think that a few hours of just sitting here with a glass or two of cold iced tea...

...wouldn't be such a bad thing, am I right?

Of course, it could be worse, did you see about THIS CITY IN IRAN that had a near world record heat index temp of 163 degrees?  I just can't imagine what those people are going through.

Updates later, have a great start to your weekend!

Friday, July 31, 2015


The other day, I posted here about a dish that we like to throw together really quick.  In the post I mentioned a "high fructose corn syrup free" BBQ sauce.  I think that generated as much interest as the recipe, ha.

So I went to the store and snapped some pics for you...  

KC Masterpiece with real sugar
It is KC Masterpiece and it's their 35 anniversary blend.  Notice the tag line on the front of the bottle?  It says "Made with Love and Real Sugar".  Not sure about the love part, ha, but the real sugar is a definite plus.

I snapped a pic of the back ingredients list.  Pretty much all good stuff.  Tomato puree, sugar and molasses as the first three largest ingredients so we're OK with that.  It's not homemade but to find it as a mainstream brand in a regular grocery store is great...so that got us to wondering...

Does anyone have any other HFCS free products from the store they like?  Share in the comments below...

Thursday, July 30, 2015


Photo image of flowers courtesy of: www.anniesannuals.com
Hello, blogger is acting up so I am not sure how this posting will look.  If the picture comes through, that's all that really matters on the post for an "Inspiration Thursday", LOL.

We like these flowers, does anyone know their identity?  The website I found this on said they were heat loving / drought tolerant but it didn't list the flower types, go figure.

I'll keep this post short, just enjoy the flowers in the dog days of Summer!

Be inspired!

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


Here is something we regularly throw together for a quick meal.  It's only three ingredients but a wonderful combination of flavors.  

Take some large sweet potatoes and slice in half lengthwise.  Put them on a foil lined baking sheet (they'll mess up an unlined pan while baking).  Roast in the oven at 400 degrees for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until fork tender. 

We make it easy by using a precooked rotisserie chicken available in the grocery store.  Just shred the chicken and put it in a pan on the stovetop. 

Add enough BBQ sauce to your liking.  We used about 2/3 of an average size bottle of good sauce.  KCMasterpiece makes an all natural sauce we love...no high fructose corn syrup, just good old fashioned sugar.  Heat until bubbling.

BBQ Chicken over Sweet Potato
Place your roasted sweet potatoes cut side up on a plate, fluff the potato a bit with a fork, top with several spoonfuls of the BBQ chicken mixture and sprinkle on a few chopped green onions.  That's all, it's ready to eat!  The BBQ chicken combines well with the flavor of the sweet potato and we had ours with a green salad on the side.